A Hole in The Universe; Mystery Solar Ripples

Reply Thu 30 Aug, 2007 08:05 pm
Here are two science stories that I think are note worthy:

Astronomers find a hole in the universe
by Seth Borenstein, Associated Press Science Writer

Astronomers have stumbled upon a tremendous hole in the universe. That's got them scratching their heads about what's just not there. The cosmic blank spot has no stray stars, no galaxies, no sucking black holes, not even mysterious dark matter. It is 1 billion light years across of nothing. That's an expanse of nearly 6 billion trillion miles of emptiness, a University of Minnesota team announced Thursday.

Astronomers have known for many years that there are patches in the universe where nobody's home. In fact, one such place is practically a neighbor, a mere 2 million light years away. But what the Minnesota team discovered, using two different types of astronomical observations, is a void that's far bigger than scientists ever imagined.

"This is 1,000 times the volume of what we sort of expected to see in terms of a typical void," said Minnesota astronomy professor Lawrence Rudnick, author of the paper that will be published in Astrophysical Journal. "It's not clear that we have the right word yet ... This is too much of a surprise."

Full Story Here


Mysterious Solar Ripples Detected

Dave Mosher
Staff Writer

Mysterious waves that help transport the sun's energy out into space have been detected by scientists for the first time.

Researchers hope their discovery of the energetic ripples, known as Alfven waves, will shed light on other solar phenomena such as the sun's magnetic fields and its super-hot corona, or outermost atmosphere. A new video shows the ripples in action.

"Alfven waves can provide us with a window into processes that are fundamental to the workings of the sun and its impacts on Earth," said Steve Tomczyk, a space scientist with the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).

Like a wave traveling along a string, Alfven waves run along the sun's magnetic field lines and reach deep into space. While astrophysicists have identified the waves far away from the sun, they've never been detected close to our star-the ripples were too small and too fast to spot.

To observe the elusive waves, Tomczyk and his colleagues pointed the coronal multichannel polarimeter (CoMP) instrument, located at the National Solar Observatory's Sacramento Peak Observatory in New Mexico, at the sun's hot, hazy corona. Thanks to CoMP's imaging speed of one picture every 15 seconds, the scientists captured the waves traveling at about 9 million mph (14.5 million kilometers per hour).

"The waves are visible all the time and they occur all over the corona, which was initially surprising to us," said Scott McIntosh, a space scientist at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colo.

The waves might help explain how energy is transferred to the sun's corona, which is millions of degrees hotter than the solar surface.

Tomczyk and his colleagues' findings will be detailed in the Aug. 30 online edition of the journal Science.
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Reply Fri 9 Nov, 2007 06:15 pm
In Walter Russell's philosophy he says, Light is the masculine energy, this is equally balanced by the feminine, which is darkness, in the material universe there are always two opposites balancing each other.
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